The Norman Transcript


June 29, 2013

Cole Hopper sentenced to 9 years in manslaughter trial



“I miss her so much,” she said, describing how much she used to enjoy shopping and visiting with her only granddaughter.

She also mentioned how Bransby’s death has affected her mother, who was present in court. She said Bransby’s mother told her she is filled with sorrow every day.

In addition to her family, Bransby truly cared about her friends, and she loved Hopper, she said.

Hopper’s grandfather’s testimony followed, describing how much he and his family knew and loved Bransby. He turned around to face Bransby’s family members and tell them he was terribly sorry for their loss.

However, just as Bransby’s grandmother hoped her granddaughter wouldn’t be defined by her drug usage, he hoped his grandson wouldn’t be defined by his wrongdoings.

“(Hopper) exercised poor judgment,” he said. “While he is very passionate and very smart, he made poor decisions, and hopefully throughout his sentence he can receive some kind of psychological education to help him improve.”

“In closing, we love Cole and we’d like to have him back with the family,” he said.

Brandi Smith, case manager for the Cleveland County Detention Center, testified that Hopper attended every class offered while in jail.

“Some inmates come in and do nothing but try to feel sorry for themselves,” she said.

But Hopper has been taking advantage of the opportunities the detention center offers and has shown remorse for what happened, she said.

Before giving the sentence, sentencing judge Tracy Schumacher pointed out that Hopper’s jury was the youngest she had ever seen — four out of the 12 jurors were under 25 — which is very unusual for a Cleveland County jury.

“You truly had a jury of your peers,” she said, looking at Hopper.

However, Hopper was found to have been irresponsible with guns and was “so devoid of a moral compass” he left Bransby to die after she was shot, she said.

So much of this case could have been solved by Hopper simply apologizing from the beginning and telling the truth, she said.

“But we’ll never know what that was,” she said and delivered his sentence.

Text Only | Photo Reprints
  • Body 1 Police identify woman found dead Monday

    Norman police have identified a woman found dead in her home at 2202 Donna Drive Monday afternoon. Police responded at 1:25 p.m. to the residence of Cassandra Thompson, 30, after receiving a report that she had not shown up for work ...

    July 29, 2014 1 Photo

  • Woman arrested for allegedly bringing gun into courthouse

    Cleveland County sheriff’s deputies arrested a Norman woman Friday after she allegedly brought a loaded handgun to the Cleveland County Courthouse. Cynthia Bodnar, 52, of Norman, entered the courthouse through the east entrance shortly ...

    July 29, 2014

  • Man in critical condition after being pinned in wreck

    A Norman man remained in critical condition Monday after a single-vehicle wreck around 10:15 p.m. Sunday at 1100 80th Ave. SE. Norman police believe Justin Davis, 33, was intoxicated when he got tangled in his vehicle and pinned....

    July 29, 2014

  • Teen dies after drowning incident

    After rescue attempts by Good Samaritans and medical crews, Oklahoma Highway Patrol confirmed that a Yukon teen died at 5:50 a.m. Monday after a drowning incident Sunday at Lake Thunderbird....

    July 29, 2014

  • Police log

    Police responded to the following incidents Sunday: · 12:07 a.m. vandalism, 700 block of Asp Avenue · 1:29 a.m. larceny report, 300 block of North Interstate Drive East · 2:50 a.m. larceny report, 300 block of North ...

    July 29, 2014

  • Felonies filed

    The following people were charged with felony counts in the Cleveland County Court Clerk’s Office: · Sheila Ann Chaddock, 30, possession of controlled dangerous substance, public intoxication · Erica Lynn Lancaster, 33, ...

    July 29, 2014

  • Injury accident reported

    Transcript Staff Emergency crews responded to an injury accident around 10:20 p.m. Sunday in the 1000 block of 80th Avenue Southeast where there were reports of someone pinned. Several reports indicated a vehicle struck a tree causing one ...

    July 28, 2014

  • Teen critical after rescue

    A 17-year-old Yukon male was transported to the hospital Sunday after a near drowning incident at Lake Thunderbird in the Party Cove area. Emergency crews responded to the lake after a report of a possible drowning around 5:30 p.m. ...

    July 27, 2014

  • County wreck fatal

    A Purcell man was killed in a single-vehicle wreck Saturday morning on Highway 77, north of Moffatt Road in Cleveland County. Keith Hedrick, 20, was pinned for about an hour and 45 minutes before the Slaughterville Fire Department was ...

    July 27, 2014

  • Junior Police Graduation First Junior Police Academy graduates

    The room went dark and a slideshow flipped through photos of children participating in the first Junior Police Academy as kids chattered excitedly, remembering what they had done over the past two weeks. Norman Police Department hosted ...

    July 25, 2014 1 Photo